Transport of patients undergoing extracorporeal membrane oxygenation is currently available in 5 referral centers in our country.
Retrospective case series of patients managed by our mobile extracorporeal membrane oxygenation team and transferred to San Gerardo University Hospital from December 2004 to December 2012.
42 patients were transported. The mean age was 42.11 (standard deviation ±18.11) years, with a range between 2 years and 70. 14 patients were females (33%) and 28 males (67%). The average transport distance was 121.69 km (±183.08) with a range between 9 km and 1044 Km. The mission’s mean time was equal to 508 minutes (±185) with range of 120-960 minutes. 29 patients (69%) were transported with extracorporeal membrane oxygenation support, while 13 patients (31%) were transported with conventional ventilation. In 28 patients (97%) a veno-venous bypass was utilized, while in one case (3%) a Veno-Arterial cannulation was performed. 32 patients survived (76%) and have been discharged alive from hospital. No major clinical or technical issues were observed during the transport.
According to our data, we conclude that a dedicated mobile team allowed safe ground transportation of patients with severe acute lung injury to our tertiary care institution.